Born in Ixelles in 1877 Simonin was a pupil at the Brussels Academy before joining the atelier of Alfred Bastien. It was Simonin's relationship with Bastien along with Penot, Smeers and Wagemans that led to the formation of the art group, `Le Sillon' one of the most influential in Belgian art. Even though he painted landscapes and some figurative pieces, he is universally regarded as a still-life painter. These still-lifes were exhibited widely in Belgium winning numerous awards and prizes. Perhaps the most important of these awards was the Oleffe Prize which he won in 1941, just five years before his death.